Romantic or Nah
It was not a small thing to the tell the person you’re in love with that you’ve been officially diagnosed with MS. I was nervous and annoyed at the prospect of losing something I hadn’t even known I wanted. He’d given me no indication that MS was a deal breaker. By the time I had received my diagnosis, I’d had one doctor’s visit and a lumbar puncture. He’d been supportive during both of those times. Still, we were just starting and it felt fragile. If I could have avoided the conversation, I would have. It’s my habit.
However, even though he lived across the country, hiding a diagnosis like MS seemed real improbable. We talked every day and throughout the day. I’ve seen a lot of sitcoms and I know that while the hijinks would have fun, it also would have been short lived.
And so I sent the news via text and his reply was almost immediate:
If you decide to run for president and leave me for Stockard Channing, I’d understand.
It was the most perfect response for various reasons. I smiled like a dork for a while. Everything that I loved about us was encapsulated in one text.
Eventually, he moved back here and we were in the same city. My walking had gotten worse since the last time we saw each other. In the winter, walking was merely annoying, by spring it was a fucking chore. When he first noticed it, he offered to give me a piggy back ride. I laughed it off but he assured me he wasn’t joking. When I tried to hide my need for a cane in his presence, he gently chided me and offered his arm. He always offers his arm when we walk and especially when I have to go downhill.
It would be easy for me to feel like a burden or unattractive and sometimes I do. As time goes on and we grow closer, the random attacks of self consciousness lessen. I rarely voice these concerns. I think it’s rarely, anyway. When I do and even when I don’t, he reassures me. I don’t know what I expected during this time but I know it wasn’t to feel physically desired. But here we are.
MS hasn’t broken us but it also hasn’t made this relationship particularly atypical. We’re regular ass people who spend a great deal of time together. My diagnosis hasn’t shielded us from the complications that come with that. And while it sounds super corny, I’m grateful for that.
I am in a relationship. A romantic realistic relationship and it’s not totally weird.